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gsenviro eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Chemical compounds are substances that are composed of two or more elements and that can be broken into individual elements through various chemical reactions. Elements being pure forms (consisting of single type of molecules) cannot be further divided. Compounds contains various elements (at least two) in a certain ratio. When this ration changes, a different chemical compound may result.

For examples, oxygen and hydrogen combine to give Water (H2O). They can also combine in a different ratio to yield, hydrogen peroxide, H2O2.

Similarly carbon, oxygen and hydrogen combine to give hydrocarbons and depending on the relative ratio of elements, they can yield different compounds. Examples are Glucose (C6H12O6), Ethyl alcohol (C2H5OH), acetic acid (CH3COOH), etc. 

Common salt, sodium chloride, NaCl is another compound. Some other commonly used compounds include brass, bronze, steel, etc. 

Please note that several molecules of same element combining together (such as H2, S8, O2, etc.) do not form compounds.

Hope this helps.

mountaingirl | Student

A compound in chemistry is made up of 2 or more atoms with a fixed ratio joined through a chemical bond.

The following are examples of chemical compounds:

NaCl = sodium chloride (table salt)

H2O = water

C12H22O11 = sucrose (table sugar)

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